You want to start a consulting business but have no idea how? This e-book will give you the step by step instructions on how to get started. It includes information like how to set up your accounting and how to find clients in addition to other important aspects of starting a consulting business.
If you're looking for more information about how to start a consulting business, download this free PDF!
Step 1: Learn New Things
Before I get into the nitty-gritty of this article, let me just say one thing. You must learn to love numbers if you want to start your own small business. If not, there’s always going to be someone out there who is better at it than you are so why bother trying?
Numbers make or break most businesses, especially when it comes to their income and expenses. Without an accurate understanding of how much money they take in versus what goes back out (aka profit), a lot of people find themselves buried under debt before they can even think about growth plans for expansion.
They often regret never taking the time to learn more about accounting because without that knowledge, building any type of successful company becomes nearly impossible.
Step 2: Apply Your Knowledge In Your Life / Business
If you have done your research and mastered a topic, now is the time to apply this newfound knowledge to something real. You don't want to waste your money if there's no possibility of getting results. So here goes...
Start building relationships with other consultants who share similar interests like yours. Ask questions about how they got started, where did they go wrong? What was their biggest mistake? How did they overcome it? etc.
You should always ask questions when you meet up with others; it shows interest and makes them happy! Make sure that these are people in your niche so that you can learn from them and also bounce ideas off each other for any future projects.
Build your social media profile and become a digital influencer in the industry by building blog content on best practices for those who are just getting started, or share your own experiences with trying out different things in the niche. This will help others to learn from you and increase their probabilities of success as well!
What is one thing that has helped you grow either your business or everyday life?
After years of working at my day job I've finally decided to take an entrepreneurial leap into consulting full-time because it was time for me to create something new that's 100% mine - something only I can envision.
Consulting allows me to work around people who align with my values, do what I love every day, have complete control over my schedule, and be an inspiration to my daughter.
Consulting also allows me to live into values of service, contribution, creativity, and autonomy - something that I didn't feel was possible in the corporate world anymore!
Step 3: Claim Your Results marketing efforts
The Consulting Business Marketing Plan is to claim your results. This can be done by using a system for evaluating and assessing success, such as key performance indicators (KPIs).
- KPIs include Traffic Volume of Web Site Visitors, Number of Phone Calls Received per Month/Week, etc.
- Assigning credit or blame for goals achieved after they have occurred should not take place absent an understanding that it will produce desired behaviors in the future; this is called accountability attribution and its values are pre-determined from expectations set at the beginning of time period being evaluated.
There are four main types that you may consider when attributing credit:
- assigning all responsibility internally; external locus of control
- assigning responsibility to external forces like the environment; situational attribution
- asserting that an event has a more or less predictable outcome inherent in its context and therefore is not under individual's control;
- and self-serving attributions which are dispositions that people have about their own success.
- A Consulting Business Marketing Plan should focus on claiming your results by using KPIs (key performance indicators) for analyzing what works best for you. By understanding how well your marketing efforts are working, it will be easier to improve them over time.
- You can use specific metrics such as Traffic Volume of Web Site Visitors, Number of Phone Calls Received per Month/Week, etc., to evaluate whether you're seeing the desired results.
- One way to measure success is by using classic marketing metrics, such as "sales leads per hour."
This metric can be calculated in two ways:
- the cost of generating a lead and the gross margin on each sale;
- or given that it costs $100 for every salesperson working one hour, then you would need 100 leads generated to break even.
The ratio between these variables will determine whether your marketing efforts are successful or not.
Step 4: Find Anyone You Can Help
Start looking around for anyone who needs help in your area of expertise. If you are good enough, then you should easily get hired. Consulting is a business that will never go out of date and there's always plenty to do; it doesn't matter what the economy is like or which country you live in.
You don't want to work alone, but rather with other consultants. It's much easier when working together than trying to do everything on your own. And besides, you'll gain more skills and knowledge through collaboration."
Step 5: Learn To Say No
You might be tempted to say "yes" when someone asks you for something. You're afraid of saying no because it feels like you'll be missing out on an opportunity - but chances are, the person will find another way if they really want what you have.
Here are a few reasons why it's important to learn how to say no:
- Consistently offering your time and effort is necessary in order to build relationships that will benefit you later down the road and not just this one situation or with this one person.
- Learning when and where to draw boundaries is also key in learning who truly has respect for your space (i.e., those who leave the room) versus those who are only there for what they can get from you.
- If someone asks you to do something--like volunteer, work on a project, or attend an event and it doesn't feel like the right fit for your needs (i.e., time constraints and interests), then learn how to say no in a polite way that will not offend them. It's important to take care of yourself first before anything else when trying to balance multiple commitments this includes saying "no" if it means maintaining your sanity!
- But don't be afraid to give back where necessary either; just make sure you're doing so consciously rather than out of obligation because people might see through those efforts and remember who was available versus who wasn't.
- By saying no, you're telling yourself that your time is valuable and important--and giving it away to someone else without asking for something in return can actually make you feel more guilty than if you were compensated with a gift!
This one skill will serve as a foundation from which other skills grow.
Step 6: Watch Your Clients Closely
A good consultant will indeed learn from their clients' cases, and this holds even more true when you're just starting your consulting business.
Consulting is a relationship-based profession, which means that it's not only important to know the technology or methodology inside out but also how people think and behave in order to be successful.
Learning about things like the various personality types or how to deal with difficult people will not only help you create the best possible solutions for your clients, but it will also make them feel heard and included in the process.
If you want your consulting business to thrive, it's important to keep your clients close and be ready to listen.
Your Most Precious Weapon As a Consultant
The best way to win people over is by making them trust you. This cannot be done with fancy words or promises, but rather through your actions and attitude. Be ready for any occasion, be kind and generous in interactions, show a genuine interest in others' thoughts - these little things make the difference between whether someone will work with you again or not.
Feel like getting started right now?
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